Grateful Dead Live at Portland Memorial Coliseum on 1974-05-19
Audio Item Preview
- Grateful Dead
- DeadLists Project
Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo, Mexicali Blues, Big Railroad Blues, Black Throated Wind, Scarlet Begonias, Beat It On Down The Line, Tennessee Jed, Me And Bobby McGee, Sugaree, Jack Straw, It Must Have Been The Roses, El Paso, Loose Lucy, Money Money, China Cat Sunflower > I Know You Rider
Promised Land, Bertha > Greatest Story Ever Told, Ship Of Fools, Weather Report Suite > Wharf Rat, Big River, Peggy-O, Truckin' > Mind Left Body Jam > Not Fade Away > Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad > One More Saturday Night
E: U.S. Blues
Related Music question-dark
Versions - Different performances of the song by the same artist
Compilations - Other albums which feature this performance of the song
Covers - Performances of a song with the same name by different artists
|Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo|
|Big Railroad Blues|
|Black Throated Wind|
|Beat It On Down The Line|
|Me And Bobby McGee|
|It Must Have Been The Roses|
|China Cat Sunflower ->|
|I Know You Rider|
|Promised Land ->|
|Greatest Story Ever Told|
|Ship Of Fools|
|Weather Report Suite ->|
|Mind Left Body Jam ->|
|Not Fade Away ->|
|Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad|
|One More Saturday Night|
-- All disc changes are seamless
- 2011-11-10 12:26:16
- Dat -> Samplitude Professional v11.03 -> FLAC
- Portland, OR
- Run time
- SBD -> Master Reel -> Dat
- Transferred by
- Charlie Miller
Subject: Fly in my soup?
I'm not gonna be mean or mad. If I am being honest and soulsearching the boys (every one of them!) have made me shiver more than once by subjectively bad sonic decisions. That's the name of the game, "taking chances." Anyway, about this show. It's a 70's Dead show. It rocks! It has a nice balance of the familiar mixed in with a healthy pinch of random precision. This show demonstrates one of the dynamics of the Grateful Dead nicely. I speak of the way that the band opens a show kind of humble, rusty maybe even shaky. The sound is bad, the band almost has a reluctant feeling toward the music. And slowly that changes... By the third song the sound guys have everything dialed in, the band can hear themselves well and start sounding way better, which gets the crowd excited that feeds the band and by the end of the first set there's 10 thousand slack mouthed heads with their eyes wide and chin resting on their knees that no longer have faces. Blown away by the mastery, the wizardry they just witnessed. And it all starts with a little squeak from the keys, or a knock from a drum.
Donna was a part of that! She brought a beauty to Grateful Dead songs... A feminine energy that was sometimes glaring in contrast with the dominant masculine. For instance, it would probably ring wrong if Donna sang Mexicali Blues. Can't and don't want to imagine what the line "tonight I got a bottle and a girl whose just 14," looks like when Donna sings.
If I'm just complaining. I think Bruce's accordion has been a bigger buzz kill than Donna at her worst... And Vince's key effects and vocals were really jarring at times. How about Brent when he was drunker than ten thousand Irishmen. My point is be nice. And...
We love you Donna!💕😘
Subject: Keep Portland weird
This show slowly became a popular trade (usually missing a few songs) after it began appearing on tapelists, the notoriety built by the inspired second set jamming. Due to technical difficulties, it plays best if you are picky about source compilation. A Gans fave, there are both aces and iffys, but of the six shows on this tour it's in the top two or three.
First Set. The beginning of Half-Step Mississippi was not taped (AUD nor SBD). The first 15secs on the official are from 4/2/73. Then the SBD/official has lead guitar dropouts (not present on the AUD/MTX). As the sound improves over the next few songs, so does the band. Things start to sparkle in Scarlet, though it's just the 3rd one and still settling/growing [especially for Donna, ouch!]. After a solid Beat it on Down the Line-5 are fine versions of Tennessee Jed and Bobby McGee. The tempo for Sugaree starts nice, then slows to sludge, and at this point all vox drop out, making the SBD/official an academic exercise (use the MTX or AUD). In Jack Straw both vox are buried and you need the AUD to hear what is a solid version. Musta Been Roses is the 7th one and still has the decent '74 tempo. Keith plays tasteful Nashville stylee (heard on MTX or AUD). The beginning is missing on all sources for El Paso as well. The first few secs on the official are from 7/19/74 and the vox are missing from the SBD. But if you use the AUD, you get X factor. Jer is now right on top and Keith adds independent riffs (heard better on MTX than AUD, making this an ephemeral ace; I had best results making my own MTX). The vox are back for Loose Lucy, but the next ace is Finance Blues (soon retitled "Money Money"). This is the 2nd of just 3 and also the best. Too bad others in the band didn't like playing Bobby & Barlow's song, given this showing. Next is a wonderful China Cat, with lemniscating leads from Jer and an excellent Feelin' Groovy @6:40. Rider is a bit understated, but check Billy and Phil.
Second Set. Big set. Now the vox are too loud on Promised Land, and again the AUD shows how good this is. Greatest Story is a wailer - mainly the insane second half. Ship is the 7th one; tight but generic. The next few are average '74, until Billy punches up Wharf Rat into an extra zone. That energy sparks up Big River. Peggy-O is the 4th one; iffy, still improving (the first 30 seconds are quiet; these are part missing and part turned down on the official). After a Tico Tico tuning (twice on SBD) comes the show peak, which is arguably a peak jam for the year as well. A 19min Truckin' starts solid and enters a jam section which has several cool features, including Nobody's Fault quotes (@7mins>9mins) and a Mind Left Body (@15:30). Before Bobby starts that you can hear Phil reaching on the shelf for GDtRFB - but Jer is anticipating MLB, quickly moving to some sustain/distortion figures. However it dissolves after a minute and a half, and he then honks some wah for the jam into Not Fade. The latter becomes uniquely bluesy at 6mins causing an incredible seg into Goin' Down the Road. There are moments in this sequence deep in the second set that are pure Dead. By One More Saturday Bobby is past done for the night. But not Jer - leading the 6th ever U.S. Blues he flings out the best one yet.
1st Set: B-
2nd Set: B+
Overall = 4 stars
El Paso - ephemeral ace
Money Money - best version
China Cat Sunflower - lemniscating and feeling groovy
Promised Land - hidden goodness
Greatest Story Ever Told - wailing second half
Truckin' - smörgåsbord
Not Fade Away - bluesy-like section sets up tranny
Goin' Down the Road Feelin' Bad - pure Dead sequence end zone
U.S. Blues - sixth the charm
SOURCES: You need more than one source. The miller_116983 works best for most, though China Cat through Peggy is slightly fast, needing -1% pitch adjustment (as does Disc 2 of the official release). The clugston_6957 runs fast throughout. The clugston_thir13en_remaster is that source, brickwalled. Where an AUD is necessary, try the 115876_aud-patlee_cousinit. There's a matrix (131464_mtx_dusborne) but it doesn't have enough AUD to cover some of the discrepancies. The Johnny BG at the end of these last two is from the next show in Seattle (it's an EQd and pitch-corrected copy of lee_weiner_gdADT_10150). The Pacific Northwest box has nearly the complete show (a couple edits and two substituted sections) with the SBD problems intact. Believe it if You Need It has China>Rider & Truckin' through 1MSN.
Subject: What she wants!!!
Not PC but one hot smoking tune.
Donna just kills it (in a very good way)
The studio session has Bobby and Donna singing
"The Bible says, "Robbing banks is a sin"
The Loose Lucy before and the China>Rider after make this a nice stretch of tunes.
For my MONEY this stretch of shows with the limited run of money, money's is real sweet.
The jam out of TRUCKIN takes this show to another level. It is one of those jams you play for somebody who says"Yeah, The Dead play that song Truckin?
The NFA>GDTRFB harkens back to some primal Pigpen type epicness !!! And Saturday Night is pandemonium.
Subject: One of the best of all time!
Mexicali has some nice Bobby tone and chords in it.
Big RR was great stuff! Energy is on the right track.
BTW was another homerun for Bobby and the “Midnights”.
Scarlet is a bit short, but so nicely played, with Keith on the organ and Bob and Jerry really making the guitars fun. Donna… ugh.
TN Jed, is a bit slow, but funky. Bob and Jerry put together another solid jam before the final chorus.
Bobby McGee is a fine version that maintains an energetic tempo.
Sugaree, what was shaping up to be freaking awesome was unfortunately marred by source issues, Jerry’s vox fall off the map, as well as Keith’s piano for a good portion. Keith comes back, but Jerry’s voice is still gone. At least his guitar never dropped.
Jack Straw still vox deprived, where are you Bob?
IMHBTR, vox issues
El Paso, vox issues
Loose Lucy, vox still low.
Money Money, the 2nd of 3 performances. Fortunately for us, the vox issue was fixed in time! Sure it’s a bit cheesy, but it’s fun and as we know Bob is a fan of cheese. It kind of reminds me of a Brother Esau in the way it’s put together, and Bob talks about Women’s Lib, come on!
China>Rider, Jer’s vox apparently not fixed, but they do come back to the proper level before the first solo. Great work by Jerry, and Bob’s rhythm playing is very psychedelic. At 6 minutes things build to a nice climax before settling down into the feeling good jam, aka actual segue point into Rider, which Bill pushes further than it usually goes and gets everyone excited. Rider features a screaming Jerry headlight verse and a good serving of Philbombs.
A nice trifecta to open up the second set? Yes, please! Fired up and ready to play, Bobby belts out the Holly song with gusto. By the time you get through this, Jerry’s guitar has turned into a razor blade, and Bob’s a fan. Heading into disco land, ahead of their time…
Ship. Funeral home Keith takes to the organ, as Jerry serenades us through his life.
Bob is really on fire here in another sequence, this one a qualifying meat sequence. Keith is as well, hitting the organ for WRS and moving to the guitar during the LIG. Jerry, of course, plays beautifully. These aren’t the noodlefest LIGs we get in the 80s, but quite cohesive and pretty. I don’t want to say less is more, but it’s nice to get different versions, which I believe is what keeps me coming back to the GD even if I take breaks for sometimes years at a time. You never really hear the same song twice, even if it is the exact song from the exact show… you’ll notice something different, follow a different instrument through a different passage, and be surprised. Starting before the 14 minute mark Jerry is trying some unique stuff, a perfect example of what I was just talking about. I find this one gets a little disjointed, but remains enjoyable. Anyhow, so in a way, less is… different, and different is more.
The music finds its way into Wharf Rat. It’s also a somewhat different version, especially in the getting up and flying away part, which sets it on the path to an extremely, and lengthy energetic climax. A+ Wharf Rat!
Big River, another fun version.
The other meat sequence to the familiar notes of Truckin’, buckle up. Jerry is feisty with his licks and chords during the verse, then the build up and release is the closest music can come to having an orgasm. Into the jam we dive, and it doesn’t go directly to the slower blues angle so many of its peers do. Jerry does hint at a Nobody’s Fault But Mine jam, but it doesn’t materialize. This is another thing I love about the band and their improv, sometimes they reject the path suggested and go elsewhere, for better or worse. The jam had start to slow but at about 9 minutes it totally changes shape to a very quick tempo blues. What ensues from here is some of the finest jamming the boys have ever put together. I find myself unable to work or study (don’t ask), and am completely dominated by the music. This maintains until the switch into the next track, the Mind Left Body Jam (clearly based on the song Your Mind Has Left Your Body by the scraps of Jefferson Airplane in 1973, from the album Baron von Tollbooth & the Chrome Nuns). This is one of the crazier ones for sure, not to be missed. Billy the one man wrecking crew puts us nicely back into traditional songs with NFA breaking the beat. Bob gets extra weird in here, to great effect. Jerry has his blues back on, and Billy is really probably the star. I love Keith’s weird organ in the GDTRFB, throughout which Billy remains absolutely unstoppable. One of the better Roads you’re going to find out there, tempo is a bullet train and Jerry is spot on… again.
Bob has to remind us that every night is Saturday for them, even if it’s Sunday… great close out.
Encore: US Blues to close out this late spring show, why the hell not? Bob and Phil make sure they are heard.
Another long one from the Golden Era coming in at about 3 ½ hours. The first set is on fire from the get go, the vocal dropouts being the only flaw, and that’s out of their hands. The 2nd set continues the greatness with 2 meat sequences and a great opening trifecta. Classic show, worthy of all the praise it receives.
A-, some very minor issues in the beginning, near total vocal drop out in Sugaree that sticks around through Loose Lucy (beginning of China>Rider for Jer!)
During this time, I recommend using the following, “re-mastered” source… https://archive.org/details/gd1974-05-19.sbd.clugston.thir13en.remaster-6957.79781.sbeok.flac16
To me, the lack of vox actually made it unlistenable (though I did listen for the sake of the review). Skip ‘em!
Subject: off the charts!!
Subject: discovering the gems
one of my favorite little segments during this era
Subject: Another gem . . .
Subject: needs a trim